Friday, May 11, 2012

Waterboarding the Dogs

Most owners of brachycephalic dogs, i.e. “short-nosed” dog breeds, which includes Pugs, Bulldogs, Pekingese and French Bulldogs, are generally oblivious to their pets’ breathing difficulties, seeing the obvious signs of distress -- snoring, an open mouth, panting while at rest, being winded after only a short run across the yard -- as ‘normal’ for "their" breed.

Other breathing-affected breeds included in a Royal Veterinary College study published this month in Animal Welfare, the journal of the Universities Federation for Animal Welfare (UFAW), include the Boston Terrier, Dogue de Bordeaux, and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

As I noted at a recent presentation (PDF) at the 2012 Conference of the International Association of Canine Professionals in Orlando, a significant percentage of British Bulldogs are, effectively, water-boarded every moment of their lives.  

If Al Qaeda ran its own dog breeding program to craft a symbolic mockery of the Great Britain and the U.S. Marine Corps, they could not have done better than the English Bulldog.


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